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FC Servette


FC Servette

Servette FC
Servette FC Logo
Full name Association du
Servette Football Club
Nickname(s) Les Grenats (The Garnets)
Founded 20 March 1890
Ground Stade de Genève
Ground Capacity 30,084
Owner Hugh Quennec
Chairman Vacant
Manager Jean-Michel Aeby
League Swiss Challenge League
2012–13 Swiss Super League, 10th (relegated)
Home colours
Away colours

Servette FC is a Swiss football club based in Geneva. They are currently playing in the Swiss Challenge League. The club was relegated to the third division in 2004-05 due to a bankruptcy, but achieved promotion to the Swiss Challenge League after the 2005-06 season, where the club remained until 2011. Servette earned promotion to the Swiss Super League after defeating Bellinzona in a relegation/promotion playoff on 31 May 2011 and have since re-established themselves in the elite of Swiss football. The club finished fourth in its first season back in the top flight, thereby gaining entrance to the Europa League second round qualification round for the 2012-13 season.


Early years to bankruptcy

Founded in 1890, Servette was the leading club in French-speaking Switzerland, having won 17 Swiss league championships and seven Swiss cups. Servette were also winners of the Torneo Internazionale Stampa Sportiva, one of the first international football competitions in the world, in 1908. In 1930 Servette organized Coupe des Nations, the predecessor of UEFA Champions League.

Led by Umberto Barberis and Claude "Didi" Andrey, in 1978-1979 the club won all of the competitions it entered - with the exception of the European Cup Winners' Cup where they were eliminated in the quarter-finals on away goals by Fortuna Düsseldorf, that year's finalist. Barberis later became French champion in 1982 with AS Monaco.

Until its bankruptcy, Servette was the only Swiss club to have remained in the top league since its creation in 1890. Servette remains the only club to have never been relegated for sporting reasons.

Bankruptcy and Revival

On 4 February 2005 the parent company of the club was declared bankrupt.[1] It had run debts of over 10 million Swiss francs, having not paid the players since the previous November, and consequently the club suffered an exodus of players looking for paying clubs. As a consequence of the bankruptcy Servette Under 21s took over the club name playing two divisions below the original Servette team in 1. Liga, a fate already experienced by regional rivals Lausanne Sports in 2003, and continued to play at the Stade de Geneve in front of smaller crowds.

In the 2005-06 season, a rejuvenated Servette secured promotion to the Challenge League, the second highest division in Switzerland.

In the 2010-11 season, Servette finished 2nd in the Challenge League, thereby qualifying for a relegation/promotion play-off against Super League team AC Bellinzona. Servette lost the initial match in Bellinzona 1-0, but won the return match 3-1 and winning the tie 3-2 on aggregate, securing promotion to the Swiss Super League.[2]

2011 to Present

During the Summer 2012 transfer window, Servette FC made very few signings, considering the club had been promoted from the second division to the Super League. Barroca, Issaga Diallo, Carlos Saleiro and Abdoulaye Fall (the latter failed to receive a work permit) were signed as permanent transfers,[3] in addition to Ishmael Yartey[4] and Roderick Miranda[5] joining the club on loan from Benfica. Costinha, a former Portugal international and Champions League winner with FC Porto, was appointed as the club's Sporting Director, after he had been previously fired by Sporting Lisbon. With a largely unchanged squad from their previous season in the second division, Servette achieved very impressive results in the first half of the season, including victories over FC Zurich, BSC Young Boys, Neuchatel Xamax, FC Lucerne, local rivals FC Lausanne-Sport and a 4-0 away win over arch-rivals FC Sion.[6] Despite achieving overall impressive results in the first half of the season, manager João Alves was fired, and was replaced by his compatriot João Pereira,[7] to the disappointment of many of Servette's supporters.

In December 2011, reports surfaced that Servette was unable to pay players' salaries, in addition to other expenses. In January 2012, one of the club's star performers and leading goalscorers, Matías Vitkieviez, was sold to Young Boys for only 150,000 CHF.[8] In February 2011, Servette filed for bankruptcy a second time. On 12 March 2012, chairman Majid Pishyar sold the club to a consortium headed by Hugh Quennec, president of the city's hockey club, Genève-Servette HC. The club was initially given one month to secure the funding necessary to come out of bankruptcy proceedings, and was successful in doing so. Pishyar remains as "honorary president" through the end of the 2011-12 season.[9]

In April 2012, the decision was made to reinstate manager João Alves, who had achieved promotion and impressive results in the first half of the season, and to fire his replacement João Pereira,[10] who had failed to improve the club's results. Alves' return immediately led to improved results, and the club finished the season's final five matches with four wins and one draw.[11] This included a 2-1 victory over FC Basel on the final day of the season, which ended a run of 17 consecutive losses against FC Basel dating back to 2001, as well as ending Basel's 26 match unbeaten streak.[12] The victory also meant that Servette secured fourth place in their first season back in Switzerland's top flight, granting Servette entry into the second round of qualifying for the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League. The season ended with further good news, as on 24 May 2012, the Swiss Football League granted Servette its license for the 2012-13 season,[13] thus marking the end of Servette's financial worries for the time being.

Servette announced that it would be preparing for the 2012-13 season with friendly matches against Thun, Shakhtar Donetsk, Yverdon-Sport, Étoile Carouge, Lausanne-Sport and Porto.[14] In the transfer market, Servette sold Stéphane Nater and Carlos Saleiro, while Ishmael Yartey and Roderick Miranda were recalled to Benfica from their loan spells. Servette bolstered its ranks by signing Geoffrey Tréand,[15] Alexandre Pasche,[16] Christopher Mfuyi,[17] Kevin Gissi,[18] Simone Grippo,[19] Mike Gomes,[20] and Samir Ramizi.[21] Servette also brought in Genséric Kusunga,[22] Steven Lang,[23] and Kelvin on loan for the season.

On 12 July 2012, it was confirmed that Servette would face Gandzasar FC in the second round of qualifying for the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League. The club won the tie 5-1, progressing to face Rosenborg BK in the third qualifier round, against whom they were eliminated on away goals. Servette's league campaign, meanwhile, went poorly, and the club was relegated (for sporting reasons) for the first time in its 113-year history in May 2013, following a 3-0 away defeat by relegation rivals FC Lausanne-Sport.

On 14 July 2013, Servette began the 2013-14 season in the Swiss Challenge League with a 2-1 win at FC Wohlen.


The home ground of Servette is the recently built Stade de Genève. It was inaugurated on 16 March 2003 after three years of construction. The opening match was played between Servette and Young Boys. With an all-seater capacity of 30,084, the Stade de Genève is the third largest stadium in Switzerland, and hosted three group matches in the 2008 European Football Championship.

Servette moved to the Stade de Genève from their old ground, the Stade des Charmilles, in 2003. The Charmilles was inaugurated on 28 June 1930, with the first game drawing a crowd of 14,000 on the first match of the Coupe des Nations. The official capacity peaked at 30,000, but a record 40,000 spectators managed to squeeze in for the international game between Switzerland and France on 14 October 1951. Flood lights were installed in 1977 and the stands were entirely covered in 1983. The capacity gradually diminished from the 1980s onward, first to 20,000 in 1985 and then to 9,250 in 1998 when the stadium became an all-seater.

Plans for a new stadium were first launched in 1984, in response to the Charmilles becoming increasingly outdated and run down. A project committee was established in 1992, which proposed to either rebuild the stadium over the course of four years or construct a new stadium elsewhere in Geneva. Meanwhile, with more substantial plans failing to materialize, the poor state of the old stadium became apparent when the main stand, the Tribune A, was declared unsafe in 1995 and closed off. A renovation project began the following year, which saw the main stand re-opened and seats eventually being installed throughout the stadium. Servette would secure another Swiss Championship and a Cup trophy while playing at the Charmilles, before construction on the new Stade de Genève finally commenced in 2000. The last match was played on 8 December 2002 in front of a capacity crowd.

Current squad

As of 21 October, 2013

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
5 France DF Christopher Routis
6 Switzerland MF Tibert Pont
7 Portugal MF Thierry Moutinho
8 Switzerland MF David Marazzi
9 Switzerland FW Igor Tadic
11 France MF Geoffrey Tréand
12 Switzerland DF Meriton Bytyqi
14 Switzerland FW Boris Cespedes
15 Togo FW Euloge Placca
16 Switzerland MF Didier Crettenand
17 Ivory Coast MF Ousmane Doumbia
18 Portugal GK Barroca
No. Position Player
19 DF Christopher Mfuyi
20 France MF Hugo Fargues
21 Switzerland MF Alexandre Pasche
22 Switzerland MF Karim Gazzetta
23 Germany DF Niklas Dams
25 Bosnia and Herzegovina DF Neven Markovic
26 Switzerland MF Mirsad Hasanovic
27 Switzerland FW Jocelyn Roux
30 Switzerland GK Christophe Guedes
32 Switzerland DF Anthony Sauthier
33 Switzerland MF Kevin Bua
34 Philippines GK Roland Müller



  • Jean-Michel Aeby

Assistant Coach

Sporting Director

  • Loic Favre

Goalkeeper Coach


  • Alessandro Ventimiglia


  • Emmanuel Bonvin


  • Denis Onkelinx
  • Bastien Veillard


  • Finn Mahler


Notable players

See also Category:Servette FC players.




External links


  • Official website (French) (German) (English)
  • Independent news site (French)
  • Independent news site (French)
  • Enfants du Servette Independent news site (French)
  • Historical website (French)


  • Section Grenat - Servette Ultras (French)
  • Maroons (German)
  • North Fans (French)
  • Vieille Garde (French)
  • Deutschweiz'86 (German)

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